- The Movement For a Democracy of Content
The Movement for a Democracy of Content was a
revolutionarypolitical organisation active from the late 1940s to the early 1970s.
With groups in the
UK, the US, West Germanyand South Africa, the "Movement" is best known for publishing the influential political magazine "Contemporary Issues" and for its involvement in the 1957 Azikwelwa Bus Boycottin Johannesburg.
The genesis of the Movement lay in the June 1947 publication of a magazine called "‘Dinge der Zeit’" (‘Contemporary Issues’). The first few issues of "‘Contemporary Issues’" were shrouded in mystery, as nearly every contributor chose to write under a
The man credited with being the Movement’s leading theoretician was "Joseph Weber", a German former member of the Trotskyite group, the IKD (Internationale Kommunisten Deutschlands). Weber, also known as "Ernst Zander", "William Lunen" and "Erik Erikson", remained one of the most frequent contributors to ‘Contemporary Issues’ until his death in 1959. The most prominent members of the Movement in its early years tended to be German émigrés; a mix of former Trotskyites and social democrats such as "Max Laufer", "Ulrich Jacobs" and "Fritz Besser". There were also South Africans living in exile such as "Pierre Watter", "Richard McArthur" and "Stanley Trevor".
The Movement opposed having a rigid
ideologicalprogramme, and its founders refuted the idea of giving “solemn assurances of promises” [Editorial, 'Contemporary Issues, Vol. 1, Issue 1, June 1947] . The nearest thing it had to a programme of ideals was Weber’s contribution to ‘Contemporary Issues’ in 1950, entitled ‘"The Great Utopia’" [Jospeh Weber, "The Great Utopia" from "Contemporary Issues (Winter, 1950)] . Ideologically, it Western notions of parliamentary democracyand Soviet communism, seeing both ‘ideologies’ as mutually reinforcing one another. Yet the Movement for a Democracy of Content was not a political party in any conventional sense.
Its followers also rejected the traditionally
leftistnotion of ‘class struggle’, instead believing that a “majority revolution” [ [http://www.bopsecrets.org/recent/reviews.htm Notes and Reviews ] ] was possible. They hoped to undermine existing power structures by providing answers to a wide range of important, and frequently neglected, topics through the pages of "‘Contemporary Issues’".
Essays on topics such as the
Aboriginalexperience in Australiawould often appear alongside articles discussing Diderot; while other writers would discuss everything from n uclear powerand urban developmentto food biology.
The Movement’s influence on mainstream politics was marginal, and its leaders prone to feuding. However, it dedicated its energies to a number of important struggles in the 1950s. The German group was particularly active in opposing
West German remilitarization. The New Yorkgroup campaigned hard in support of the 1956 Hungarian Uprising, while also causing a stir with Murray Bookchin’sarticles about synthetic chemicals in food.
Johannesburggroup, founded by Afrikaanspoet and activist, "Vincent Swart" and his American wife Lillian, experienced particular success campaigning against the Apartheidgovernment on several local issues. The most notable was the organisation and leadership shown by Dan Mokonyaneduring the 1957 Azikwelwa Bus Boycott'[Dan Mokonyane, 'Lesson of Azikwelwa', Nakong Ya Rena, London] . As part of one of six groups charged with organising the Alexandra Township People’s Transport Committee, Mokonyane successfully helped the people of the township to oppose a price hike by the local bus company [ [http://www.sowetan.co.za/News/Article.aspx?id=710559 Sowetan - News ] ] .
* [http://www.bopsecrets.org/images/weber.pdf Marcel Van Der Linden, The Prehistory of Post-Scarcity Anarchism: Josef Weber and the Movement for a Democracy of Content (1947-1964)]
* [http://www.bopsecrets-org.pem.data393.net/CF/weber.htm Dan Mokonyane, 'Lesson of Azikwelwa', Nakong Ya Rena, London, 1979]
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Movement for Changes — Pokret za promjene Покрет за промјене Leader Nebojša Medojević Founded 2002 … Wikipedia
Solidarity – The Union for British Workers — is a United Kingdom trade union formed in late 2005 that is closely associated with the British National Party and Third Way think tank. It is named after the Polish trade union Solidarność, and its logo (which it has trademarked) also appears to … Wikipedia
The Guardian — For other uses, see The Guardian (disambiguation). The Guardian A Guardian front page from July 2011 Type Daily newspaper Format Berliner … Wikipedia
Democracy and Desire — (also Democracia y Deseo) is an evolutionary exhibition project by artist Per Hüttner that develops as it travels. It has been shown in various public and private venues in Europe since November 2006. The project takes its inspiration from Zen… … Wikipedia
Democracy — For other uses, see Democracy (disambiguation) and Democratic Party (disambiguation). A woman casts her vote in the second round of the French presidential election of 2007 … Wikipedia
The Third Wave — was an experimental demonstration of nazism movement [http://www.cubberleycatamount.com/Content/66 67/Catamount%20Pages/V11No14/ The Catamount, Vol 11., No 14., page 3] ] [http://www.ronjoneswriter.com/wave.html Article with participants… … Wikipedia
Movement to impeach George W. Bush — The movement to impeach George W. Bush is a series of actions and commentary within the public and private spheres voicing support for the impeachment of United States President George W. Bush. The phrase is also used in a broader sense to refer… … Wikipedia
The End of History and the Last Man — is a 1992 book by Francis Fukuyama, expanding on his 1989 essay The End of History? , published in the international affairs journal The National Interest . In the book, Fukuyama argues that the advent of Western liberal democracy may signal the… … Wikipedia
The Antichrist (book) — The Antichrist Cover of the 2005 Cosimo edition … Wikipedia
The Fellowship (Christian organization) — For other groups of similar name, see The Fellowship. Fellowship Foundation Formation 1935 Headquarters Cedars, a mansion in Arlington, Virginia Associate Director Douglas Coe … Wikipedia